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Over 1 mln Ukrainian tourists visit Crimea since early 2019

In total, the citizens of 159 countries have visited Crimea this year

SIMFEROPOL, October 2. /TASS/. More than 1 mln Ukrainian tourists (or one in seven tourists) have visited the Crimean Peninsula since the beginning of 2019, the Crimean Ministry of Resorts and Tourism told TASS on Wednesday.

"Over 1 mln tourists from Ukraine have already spent their vacation in Crimea," the ministry said. "A total of 6.6 mln tourists went on holidays to Crimea in January-September 2019, or a 10% increase compared with the similar period of 2018."

More than half of tourists (57%) arrived in the Black Sea peninsula using the newly-opened Crimean Bridge, while the others traveled by plane (28%) and by crossing the Russian-Ukrainian border (15%). The citizens of 159 countries have visited Crimea or 27 countries more compared with last year, Head of the Parliament’s Committee on Health-Resort Complex, Tourism and Sports Alexei Chernyak told TASS on Wednesday.

The number of tourists coming from Europe and Asia has significantly grown, he stressed. "The countries, which were mostly dissatisfied with Crimea’s reunification with its homeland due to political reasons, have been showing a good increase in tourist flow, namely the United States, France and Germany, as well as the Baltic states and Ukraine," the official said.

This summer the Ukrainian citizens’ tourist flow to Crimea has doubled. In July, some 11,000 people and nearly 1,500 vehicles crossed the border per day. Crimea’s authorities noted that some Ukrainian tourists own property in Crimea and many of them have friends and relatives living on the peninsula. Many of them come to their favorite destinations in Crimea, mostly to eastern and western regions, and also to see the Crimean Bridge and visit Russia’s southern Krasnodar region.

Last year, a record high number of tourists - nearly 6.8 mln people - came to Crimea. The authorities expect that some 7.5 mln tourists, including more than 1.2 mln Ukrainians, will visit the Black Sea peninsula in 2019. In 2020, the tourist flow to the republic is expected to exceed the record high number of 8 mln last time recorded during the Soviet time.